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Comment Re:Vitality is defined by users, not developers. (Score 2) 51

^^^ This.

Many FOSS projects are all about the fun of programming them, not about having a user base. Such projects get put "out there" in the hopes that someone might someday find them useful, but it doesn't really matter to the people working on them whether they ever have a substantial user base, as long as it continues to be fun to program and work on the project.

If user base was what counted to me, I'd have abandoned MSS Code Factory years ago. To this day I've never had more than 100 or so downloads in a week, and usually more like 10-20. But it's fun. It keeps me entertained. And that is what really "matters" to me; not it's popularity.

"Popularity breeds contempt."

Comment Re:Vitality is defined by users, not developers. (Score 2) 51

You call it "Stockholm Syndrome"; I call it being "willing to learn".

Fully half of the things I see people complaining about over Gnome 3 have been fixed over the years. But they keep on bringing up bugs and issues that were with the .1 release.

Being ignorant of something is forgiveable; it can be corrected through education. Remaining willfully ignorant about something by refusing to educate yourself is stupidity.

Comment Re:Vitality is defined by users, not developers. (Score 1) 51

*shrug* Gnome 3 is different, but it isn't that bad if you take the time to learn how to work with it. I was frustrated with KDE 5 after many years of being a KDE advocate, so I gave Gnome 3 a serious try a few months ago and am now quite comfortable with it on my desktop. Contrary to the bleating of people who whine about it being "touch-oriented", I don't find it to be so at all.

But I'm not a "normal" desktop user. I've used so many desktop environments since the '80s, starting with the Amiga and Atari, that I really don't have much for specific expectations of "how a desktop should work." OS/2 Warp, Windows, Mac Classic, Motif, Sun's desktop, the environments provided by HP and IBM workstations, KDE, XFce, Gnome 2, Gnome 3... there really isn't much in common amongst them other than that they all had windows of some sort. :)

Comment "Killed off"? (Score 1) 51

How do you "kill off" an open source project if the public is willing to take over the development and maintenance? Sure you may be continuing with a non-open-source branch of the code for your own products, but that doesn't stop anyone from working with the last released code base.

Comment Depends on the account (Score 2) 132

Sure, you can have my NYTimes password - it's "passw0rd", unless they required mixed-case, in which case it's Passw0rd. (No, I'm not mentioning the login I use there, but it's no big loss if somebody starts impersonating me there.)

My Slashdot password? It's pretty complicated, my browser remembers it, and on the rare occasions where I need it, I have to remember where I wrote it down.

My bank account passwords? Sorry, get a warrant, and since cops who actually need to know that can get the information from my bank, they don't need MY password to do that, and don't need the ability to drain my bank account.

Comment Last time I had a credit card stolen (Score 1) 211

It was Christmas Eve, somebody lifted the Visa card out of my wife's purse while we were at dinner. They bought coffee at a mall (successful), then tried to buy a TV at a Radio Shack 10 miles away (failed), and we got a phone call from the credit card company. It wasn't my home state (visiting family, and my mom actually did need a new TV :-) Successful detection!

But I've also had a couple of rounds of false alarms, where I've been traveling somewhere and gotten the "Card declined, call us" when I tried to use the card, because their fraud detector triggered on purchases in an unusual city - even though I'd also used that card to buy the airline tickets :-) They should have done better.

The only other times I've had credit cards physically stolen were once when my wife's purse got stolen (we canceled the cards before they got used), and once decades ago, back when credit card verification was handled with little paper books, and I had to go into the Sears store in Oakland and give them 25 signature samples (which felt a lot like I should also be writing "I will not let my credit card get stolen again".) The thief, or somebody they sold the card to, eventually bought about $1300 worth of stuff over a few months, even though I'd reported the theft and I wasn't liable for any of it.

Comment Re:MacBook Black (Score 1) 51

I could maybe believe that it was caused by a cold solder joint somewhere on the motherboard or inside one of the chips, but the sort of thermal expansion required to cause a short circuit just isn't very plausible, IMO.

It is about a million times more likely that the CPU heat sink wasn't installed properly, leading to a thermal shutdown.

Comment Re:I'm shocked. (Score 2) 51

Apple hardware has been getting shoddier and shoddier since Jobs kicked the bucket.

You're imagining things.

  • Many PowerBook Wallstreet machines had to be cracked open every couple of weeks to reseat the hard drive whenever it disconnected themselves from the motherboard. Others shot sparks in the back of the machine because the shielding near the power supply connector slipped sideways and shorted things out. One entire model was IIRC basically recalled en masse to crack open the screens and epoxy the video display cables' connectors in place because they kept coming loose during normal use.
  • The original (black) power cords on the PowerBook G3 series were recalled en masse because of reports of overheating. The cables also kept breaking between the ferrite bead and the connector. These may have really been the same failure....
  • The replacement (yo-yo) power cords on the PowerBook G3 series had so many internal cable failures (leading to scorch marks from the tiny electrical arcs inside the cables) that they were nicknamed "sparky" by folks in the know.
  • The white iBook was notorious for GPU failures (with many customers going through several logic boards per year), as was the first MacBook Pro.
  • The first G5 PowerMac had horrible power supply noise problems that led not only to audible noise, but also problems with internal and external professional audio recording equipment.
  • The first two generations of MacBook and MacBook Pro cables (the non-L-shaped versions) were notorious for breaking internally near the connector.

Note that all of those product releases happened under SJ.

Comment Re:Are they actually powered down? (Score 1) 51

I suppose it could be a bug. With that said, the fact that it is only occurring on some devices and not others leads me to doubt that explanation. After all, ignoring minor differences in vendors for the CPU (and differences in flash capacity), these devices are supposed to be identical, so it isn't as though there are going to be drivers that run only on some devices and not on others. (I'm assuming this isn't only occurring while some device like the camera connection kit is attached; that would almost certainly have been mentioned if it were true.)

That leaves configuration differences as the only possible cause that doesn't involve defective hardware. If it is only occurring on a single carrier, that might be just barely plausible (though very unlikely. If it is only happening on devices upgraded from a particular previous OS, it is barely plausible (though very unlikely).

My money is on either a bad batch of Touch ID sensors or a battery defect leading to overheating and a thermal shutdown.

Comment Re:Airstrikes on population centers (Score 1) 359

Russia supports Assad, the party recognized by the UN and human rights groups as responsible for the lion's share of the war deaths and over 10k tortured to death in its intelligence centers. However, it's doing this not by opposing the opposition uniformly, but by heavily focusing on non-Daesh entities. If successful, this would leave a conflict between Assad and Daesh, wherein the west would basically be forced to accept Assad. Iran and Hezbollah are Russia's copatriots in this.

Where I come from, that's known as giving material support to a terrorist organization, i.e. state sponsorship of terrorism. How, precisely, has Russia managed to avoid a complete trade embargo from every civilized nation on the planet?

Comment Re:Paved with good intentions... (Score 1) 230

...or, you could just read those communications with Al'qaeda that you say are still on that computer. In fact, you most likely had, or you wouldn't be doing a home invasion on the American dream. And let's face it, if the bomb isn't in the place it was constructed, then it's 99% likely it's already been exploded at it's target location because real life isn't written by script writers trying to pad out a 42 minute long TV episode.

You're assuming that the actual communications were on the computer, rather than merely evidence that communication occurred (e.g. URLs of a known Al Qaeda chat room in the web browser's history). I was assuming the opposite. :-)

And yes, it's a big stretch—the sort of thing that makes for good TV, but that isn't very likely to happen IRL.

"Confound these ancestors.... They've stolen our best ideas!" - Ben Jonson